Online Community Manager: What Does It Take to be Successful?

Photo by semaphoria

Photo by semaphoria

This is the third in a series of online community manager posts over the past couple of weeks here on WebWorkerDaily. I’ve already talked about online community manager jobs and what community managers actually do, so I thought that we’d talk about what it takes to be successful as a community manager. There are skills to learn and work habits that are useful for community managers.

Here are just a few of the skills and habits that people have already mentioned in the comments of the previous posts.

Amber Naslund says, “it’s not a 9 to 5 gig, and it’s a hybrid of so many disciplines – communication, business development, online knowledge, customer or client service.”

Joe Manna says, “most successful community managers are those that come from a strong customer service background.”

Lex Friedman says, “If you like to listen and love acting on good ideas (regardless of their source!), you’re probably a good fit for the career path.”

I also have my own list of what it takes to manage an online community.

  • Patience to let others participate without dominating the conversation.
  • Networking with a wide variety of people and being able to call on the right ones at the right time.
  • Communication skills to get your point across clearly and concisely.
  • Facilitation to help people keep discussions moving in a positive direction.
  • Technical skills and an understanding of how your community software operates can help.
  • Marketing to make sure people know about your online community.
  • Self Motivation and the ability to work without much supervision.
  • Workaholic tendencies in a global environment where the community never sleeps.
  • Organization skills to keep track of the many activities without dropping too many balls.

What do you think it takes to be a successful community manager?

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